(America) Adam Hincks—Wonders of the Universe

Posted by Kendall Harmon

If modern cosmology does not provide new theological insight into questions of origins or bigness, one can discover anew the lessons of old.

New cosmological discoveries remind us of the wonder we ought to have before creation. Unlike our ancestors, who saw the stars above them every night, many city-dwellers, surrounded by artificial lights 24 hours a day, have been cut off from the heavens. Half the world’s population is now urbanized, and the fraction is growing. Ironically, despite our great scientific knowledge, we may be regressing in our aesthetic experience of the night sky, for we rarely see it. A connection with the heavens was important to the psalmist and to other biblical authors. We could also look to St. Ignatius Loyola, who during one period derived his greatest spiritual consolation from contemplating the stars.

We can today reclaim an aesthetic appreciation for the cosmos, but we have to be more intentional than our forebears, who needed only to wander outside after dark. The beautiful images and fascinating discoveries that come from modern observatories are an excellent aid. As Christians, we ought to welcome astronomical research.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchReligion & CultureScience & Technology

Posted May 10, 2012 at 11:16 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Milton Finch wrote:

My wife and I live in the rural area of South Carolina.  We have two chairs set up to view the sky weather permitting. It is very reassuring as we view the heavenly chorus that we are of the created order.  Thanks be to God for little light pollution.

May 10, 1:22 pm | [comment link]
2. evan miller wrote:

Same here Milton.  We live on a farm in Ky and love our night sky, as well as sunrises and sunsets.  both of our children have grown up with the same appreciation.  “The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament sheweth his handiwork.”

May 10, 1:52 pm | [comment link]
3. QohelethDC wrote:

Milton, Evan: That sounds great! As a city dweller, I do contend with light pollution, alas. But I fondly remember a parish retreat in rural Maryland where the sky was speckled with stars. One of my fellow retreatants was a retired Navy navigator, and his tour of the constellations brought the sky to life in a way I’d never appreciated before. When I’m in town, I sometimes get my starry night fix from NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day.

May 10, 2:36 pm | [comment link]
4. sophy0075 wrote:

Psalm 19:1 is as true as ever, notwithstanding the rants of the atheists!

May 10, 9:06 pm | [comment link]
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